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Napolitano defends Senate immigration reform proposal

April 23, 2013 at 2:53 PM   |   Comments

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WASHINGTON, April 23 (UPI) -- U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said Tuesday a Senate plan to reform immigration is "an important first step" in the process.

Napolitano, testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, called the "Gang of Eight" plan praiseworthy for several reasons, Politico reported. She cited the proposal's improved border security, stricter accountability for employers who hire illegals and the modernization of the legal immigration system as improvements over existing immigration law.

She also praised the proposal's pathway to citizenship for the estimated 11 million undocumented people already living in the United States.

"These are all common sense steps that the majority of Americans support," Napolitano said in prepared remarks. She added that the introduction of the bipartisan bill is a "true milestone, and we look forward to working with you to build on this momentum."

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